When Ireney’s best friend Kate decided to get married, she was overjoyed with gladness for her. Kate had finally found the perfect man for her and was so excited to be marrying him. The two women began making plans, spending hours on the phone and internet together. Kate’s dream dress was discovered on the internet, a lovely silk velvet gown with laces up the back, fit for a medieval queen. Absolutely gorgeous. The bridesmaid’s dresses were also of a medieval nature with long gold flowing sleeves.
A whirlwind of planning and shopping activities followed along with some tearful, stressed out moments as the big day grew closer. This was such an important time in Kate’s life that it was important to Ireney too. She was as close to Kate as if she were her sister and it was an honor for Ireney to be a part of her wedding. Ireney took her duties very seriously and wanted to be the best matron of honor ever. She studied up on her duties and wedding etiquette so as to do everything properly.
John-Wayne even got a little excited and announced his intention to wear his new blue suit jacket purchased from Walmart. Many details were discussed among the women along with some squeals of delight as the rustic elegant wedding decor and clothing were decided upon. This was to be a very tasteful garden wedding with a medieval flavor. Kate had some friends whom were chef’s and had volunteered to barbecue tri tip and salmon along with asparagus spears. Lemonade and iced tea and potluck dishes were also to be part of the feast, along with some killer cheesecake and coffee.
As the weeks turned into the days prior to the wedding, rainclouds gathered and frequently burst upon the valley with heavy downpours and some thunder and lightning. Ireney and Kate became extremely worried that it was going to dump rain upon the beautiful wedding tables and dresses, ruining everything. This led to the rental of a huge white canopy which eased their minds some.
The two women had been running around shopping and doing other errands, looking at their lists, and getting manicures and pedicures for about4 days prior to the wedding. They were both exhausted, stressed out and gleeful at the same time. To make matters worse, Kate’s groom had come down the night before the wedding with a case of food poisoning but thank the Lord was better by late evening.
Finally the morning of the wedding came and the sky was a beautiful sunny blue with a few fluffy clouds. Ireney and Kate were relieved. Ireney showered and put on her running shoes, grabbing her suitcase and coffee on the way out the door. She headed to Kate’s house where trucks were being loaded with tables and barbecue grills, wedding flowers, clothing and candles, tablecloths and napkins and every other little item needed for the ceremony and feast following.
For the first time in her life, Ireney began to feel a little afraid of Kate. Kate had a look on her face of a woman driven close to the brink of madness due to too much stress, worry and lack of sleep. Ireney tread cautiously around Kate for that day as she tried to help.
Finally everything was loaded and the caravan were on their way to a lovely historic hotel with beautiful grounds about an hour away.
Ireney’s other best friend Lucy had traveled 8 hours to spend the weekend with Ireney and enjoy Kate’s wedding with her. Poor Lucy didn’t realize what she was getting into when she had made plans to spend the weekend and attend a wedding. She worked hard alongside Ireney and Kate unpacking things and setting up wedding tables, dishes and decorating with white fluffy tulle and ivy. Time was of the essence as the women were running behind about an hour in their preparations. Finally Kate had went into the inn to get dressed and do her hair. Ireney and Lucy followed about an hour later, checking into the hotel and dragging luggage up the steep staircase, trying to admire the setting and decor of the 100 plus year old historic inn as they went.
Kate’s hair was lovely, swept back into a high ponytail with beautiful curls cascading down her back. Her dress was wrinkled though and her friend and other Maid of Honor Miss Dee was trying to steam the wrinkles out with a fabric steamer. The wrinkles were being stubborn, and eventually Lucy took over the job, while the women got dressed and Ireney’s hair was done.
The women were transformed into a lovely medieval queen and her court. Kate was so beautiful that Ireney almost cried looking at her. Ireney herself was as excited as if she were getting married and totally enjoyed the styling of her hair and makeup transforming the country girl into a lovely proper medieval woman of the court with a slightly innocent wenchy look hiding behind those feisty eyes. Ireney definitely got into the role as if it had been meant for her and felt as it she were glowing with happiness and excitement for her friend. Something sweet that jumped out at Ireney and filed away at the back of her mind, was the unselfishness of her bride-friend in regards to her enjoyment in Ireney’s transformation.
The woman were about 45 minutes late and headed down the steep staircase, where Kate’s brother Marc met them. They headed out back and behind the hotel on a stone pathway, with Marc saying calmly and assuring to Kate and the women, “Now just walk slowly and smile, you have all the time in the world”. This also calmed Ireney’s pounding heart and nerves as they approached the bridge that would lead the way through a garden archway to the outdoor wedding altar and Pastor Doug whom was waiting with his back to the little creek which was gurgling and singing along.
Ireney could hear the harpist’s lovely music as she took a step down and began the wedding procession towards the bridge praying to God that she would not trip and fall. She took a step onto the bridge and smiled as she walked slowly across towards the group of people waiting by the little outdoor altar. One lady said “Hey Ireney” and smiled as she went by. Ireney saw John-Wayne looking at her with this amazed look on his face. It was an admiring look and as Ireney walked by John-Wayne, she gave him a little wink and said “Hey baby”, softly almost under her breath. John-Wayne’s smile stretched across his face from ear to ear.
Next came Miss Dee walking across the bridge looking lovely in an almost golden way, followed by a slight pause. Kate and Marc approached the bridge. Marc gave Kate a little kiss on her cheek and she began her walk across the bridge towards her groom and new life of marriage.
As Kate approached the altar the look on her groom’s face almost made Ireney cry. Kate was such a lovely bride with a soft look of love on her face and in her eyes as she gazed up at her groom Bryan. Bryan looked down at Kate with an amazing look of love and tenderness as the ceremony began.
As the Pastor went through the ceremony, Ireney was having some difficulty as there was not quite enough room for two Maid of Honors to stand next to the Bride, therefore she was nestled in the trees some. Her long flowing golden sleeve caught on the wrought iron pillar and Ireney had a momentary fear that it would topple over with her, but she dislodged the sleeve and all was well. A little bee lit on each of the women’s bouquets and each woman ignored the bee as it did it’s job with the flowers and flew away. The Unity Candle was lit and communion taken by the Bride and Groom. It was such a lovely ceremony as their lives together were signified by the lighting of the candle and their sharing of the blood of Jesus as an almost married couple for the first time, drinking out of the same goblet.
As they were pronounced man and wife, Ireney felt this huge sense of relief and happiness for her friend. The couple kissed and the crowd applauded. The photographer began taking more pictures and the crowd milled about talking and hugging and laughing. Ireney was visiting with some of the folks and discussing how beautiful everything was.
Something in the vision of the corner of Ireney’s eye made her turn and glance back towards the altar. The altar area with the burning Unity Candle was still so lovely and pure looking except for one thing that made Ireney’s jaw drop wide open. Her beloved husband John-Wayne had rolled a cigarette on the white table cloth and was leaning over to light his home rolled cig directly off of the Unity Candle! Ireney froze in disbelief at his ignorance, with fury following as she watched John-Wayne take a puff of his cigarette and then pick up the goblet with the left over blood of Christ and take a big swallow, downing the wine left in the glass.
Ireney picked up her dress on both sides and flew across the grass hen style towards poor John-Wayne, hissing and almost spitting out his name. “John-Wayne, No, No, NOooooo!:” John-Wayne jerked his head around and saw the blazing fury in Ireney’s eyes as she clucked her way towards him. He grabbed up his tobacco pouch and scurried away, afraid for his life. Damned that crazy man, what was he thinkin’? The altar was a sacred place. She would hope that no one else noticed and would kill him later.
The rest of the day was very nice, with much laughter and hugs, mingled in with pictures. The feast was wonderfully delicious, the chef’s had outdid themselves. The cheesecake was decadent and the cup of coffee was like medicine for Ireney. Kate’s family and friends swooped in and cleaned up, packing the trucks and whisking all away.
Kate was so exhausted that she could not get out of her dress by herself and when Ireney and Lucy went upstairs to help, found her flopped face down on the bed in the lovely dress. As Kate looked up at them, she had a look on her face that if you did not know her you would think she had imbided of too much alcohol. Not so, as Kate did not drink and there was no alcohol at her wedding. Ireney wondered how she would ever enjoy her wedding night with so much exhaustion evident on her face, poor thing. Lucy and Ireney helped Kate out of her dress and she pulled on some jeans still glowing from the ceremony and love.
They all gathered on the huge front porch later that evening and rested and talked about the ceremony. It was a very lovely cozy aftermath and Ireney enjoyed it.
Lucy and Ireney had planned to stay on at the hotel for the night also, but were both having a hard time unwinding from the days of activity, so they took a walk. They were looking for a nice spot to smoke the joint in and got afraid as they saw the local police car cruise by, so they waited. “Can you imagine Lucy, getting busted at our age?” said Ireney.
Finally, they took a couple of tokes and got stoned silly, giggling and laughing all the way back to the inn. They slept together in the big four posted bed and giggled like school girls through the night.
The next morning after a lovely breakfast the women headed home. Ireney and Lucy talked and talked on the drive home. They had had so much fun sharing in this experience with Kate that they would always remember it.
Ireney hugged Lucy goodbye and they made plans to get together in her town next. As Lucy drove away, Ireney in her still exhausted state of mind, thought to herself what an honour it was to have been a part in Kate’s special day and what an honour it was to have friends like her and Lucy in her life.
Ireney walked into her kitchen and let out a little sigh when she saw the dirty dishes on the counter. She also spied a little blue napkin that had somehow traveled home from Kate’s wedding. Kate had to return all of the linens from the wedding in a few days. “John-Wayne!!!” yelled, Ireney. Darned that man what was he thinking?